A combination of snow, wind and dropping temperatures made an ice mess out of everything road crews cleared during Sunday's blizzard that dropped more than 5 inches of snow in Hastings.
Coming on the tail of a 65-degree high Saturday, the storm began with a downpour of rain that segued into snow around midnight. As temperatures dipped rather suddenly to below freezing, swift gusts created whiteout conditions as street crews began clearing roads at about 2 a.m. along snow routes and near schools.
About the time they were wrapping up efforts, gusts reaching 54 mph at 3:55 a.m. Sunday negated their efforts.
"We basically saw a little bit of everything," said Richard Douglas, city street department supervisor. "We tried to clear snow through the whiteout, and it was kind of futile. We had the streets cleared, then we got another inch or so of snow, so kind of everything we did got covered up again.
"We came back last night (Sunday) about 7 and hit all the snow routes again, but as you can see, everything kind of turned to ice. I guess the ground temperature must have been up there because the snow hit that pavement and just melted. We had nice clean streets, but when that temperature dropped and it continued to snow, it messed everything up."